New technology. New processes. Even though you may need them, just the thought of these things can be scary. While you know your organization will benefit from both, you know from experience that it involves change….and for some people, change doesn’t go over well. For many companies, there is a higher comfort level when deciding to gradually “phase-in” a transportation management system versus choosing a full-scale approach. There are several options to consider, each one of which can prove to be effective.
5 Ways to Phase In a TMS
By Division. Many companies have different divisions, each of which is essentially treated like a separate company. Oftentimes, they have different shipping lanes, products, personnel, carriers, etc. Before trying to tackle all divisions, it may make sense to focus resources on one division at a time.
By Location. While all of your various warehouses may share similar transportation processes, there may be disconnect between these “secondary” locations and your primary shipping/receiving facility. Therefore, it may be difficult to get buy-in to a new technology or process at those secondary locations. A successful implementation at your primary warehouse will help create buy-in at your other facilities.
By Mode. You may have personnel with limited knowledge of one particular mode, but extensive knowledge of others. Additionally, the processes surrounding one mode type may be known, while with others they may be unclear. In these instances, a TMS deployment by mode type may need to be considered.
Inbound vs. Outbound. Maybe your organization isn’t yet routing inbound shipments. Or if it is, you don’t want to conduct training with your vendors until all internal users are on-board. In this case, phasing-in the technology based on whether the freight is inbound versus outbound may be ideal.
Hybrid. In many cases, a combined approach amongst the above options is the best strategy. Examples of the hybrid model may include focusing on outbound truckload, inbound LTL shipments from location A, or outbound shipments for division B.
Choosing the right TMS deployment approach is dependent upon the unique characteristics of your business. As you try to figure out which strategy works best for you, take time to consider the options available for phasing in a TMS.
Wondering how a TMS could benefit your business? Talk to us about it. Click here for more information.